Libreria by Second Home, London Libreria by Second Home, London
Libreria by Second Home, London Libreria by Second Home, London
Libreria by Second Home, London Libreria by Second Home, London

Lost in literature

09 : 03 : 2016 Second Home : SelgasCano : Independent Bookstores

London – A new bookstore concept by Second Home champions serendipity over straight taxonomy.

  • The store organises titles around unusual, self-selected themes rather than genres 
  • Second Home’s founders saw the bookshop as the next obvious extension of their brand

Libreria is operated by East London’s Second Home, a mixed social and enterprise space for start-ups situated opposite. The two projects were both designed by Spanish architecture practice SelgasCano. The store’s retail concept draws directly from Second Home’s ethos of creative confluence, aiming to act as a cross-current between as many different individuals, enterprises and ideas as possible.

Libreria’s organisational principle differs from that of regular bookshops, eschewing genre-based classifications for more closely curated sections on themes such as mothers, madonnas and whores, or the sea and the sky. SelgasCano installed undulating book shelves and applied reflective surfaces to the ceiling and walls to create an infinity effect that makes the relatively restricted space feel boundless, enhancing the perception of exploratory browsing.

Second Home founders Rohan Silva and Sam Aldenton created Libreria, which bans the use of electronic devices, as an antidote to the myopia of algorithm-based online shopping.  

The Big Picture

Consumers are increasingly aware that the digital world traps them in filter bubbles and confirmation biases, shielding them from the unexpected and negating the joy of discovery. Physical retailers need to capitalise on their inherent ability to surprise. For more on the power of serendipity, read our Revelation Brands macrotrend.

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